Team Coming Together at Right Time

I think this game could be the turning point in the season. The victory against Minnesota would have been meaningless if the team hadn't won the next game. They went on the road and won the game now they can start piling wins up at home.

The Bears took advantage of the situation with Jamal Anderson and Tony Martin out. The key to the game was the defense. The group pressured the quarterback and forced five turnovers. Any time you can get five turnovers your defense has done something. They came up with 3 interceptions and 2 fumbles. I wanted three sacks and they got seven. More and more they are starting to look like a team that can get turnovers. I understand people worry about total defense rankings, but get me the ball.

The whole unit is playing well at this point. Phillip Daniels has been outstanding the last two games with four sacks. The two big guys up the middle Ted Washington and Keith Traylor stuffed the run. Brian Urlacher, Rosevelt Colvin and Warrick Holdman all did something from the linebacker position. Colvin had three sacks, Urlacher a sack a pick and a fumble return for a TD and then Holdman stripped Alge Crumpler on a ball recovered by Walt Harris.

The defense took no prisoners today. The other side of the ball struggled on the first half. The offense didn't take advantage of great field position. They have to start coming up with some plays to score.

However, in the second half the offense came out on fire. Marty Booker started it by throwing the ball for a TD to Marcus Robinson.

Another huge play that has been overlooked was the 3rd and play inside the Atlanta 10. Miller went for a playaction pass and gets his pass deflected and picked off, but if he hadn't have made the tackle on Ray Crockett he still would have been running. That would have been a score going the other way.

Offensively once again Booker came up big on the 63-yard touchdown where he outran the defense. You've also got to be impressed with Anthony Thomas. He had an average of 5.2 yards per carry. I would like to see more of him on the goal line and that will probably come.

David Terrell makes one big catch for 19 yards, but it was a first down. It was disturbing to have so many drops. Dez White continues to struggle. Terrell has to move ahead at this point. With Robinson, Booker and Terrell you could see some three receiver sets, which would spread out the defense opening more holes for the running game.

Brad Maynard put two punts down inside the ten-yard line that pins the offense down and forces them to hold back on play calling. He has the ability to win the field position game every week.

So what you are seeing they are starting to understand how to win. Chicago is starting to understand they need to win games in a row to go up a level. 2-1 is a lot better than 1-2.

The Bears are hitting an important schedule with Arizona, Cincinnati, San Francisco and Cleveland coming up. When you get to Green Bay on November 11, you want to be there with ammunition having won three 3 or 4 in a row.

That's why the win against Atlanta was huge. Now with Arizona winning against Philadelphia they won't take Arizona for granted.

Things are starting to come together. Jim Miller is only going to get better. The same for the running game because they have the attempts. Playing the run and the Bears come back with the playaction pass.

You'd like to have a higher average per attempt rushing, but the pass opening up the run. If they start respecting your passing game then they can't stack 8 on the line.

You can't let a defense get comfortable. I'm a big guy on yards per pass. Miller had 7.9 yards per pass, so this means they're moving the ball downfield and making big plays. If you stay in that area you're going to win games.

The makings are there if this team continues to improve and stay at this level they could win 9 games baring major injuries.

You can't think small. Players have to act like it's the last play they can't take time off, especially when they're up against the better teams because consistency is the mark of good teams.


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